Nitrogen Pollution Current Affairs - 2020

COVID-19: New Technology to Disinfect Maharashtra Hospitals under “NIDHI PRAYAS” Programme

A new technology has been adopted by the Maharashtra hospitals in the fight of COVID-19 fight. The technology was developed by a Pune based Start Up.

What is the product?

The product developed is a Negative Ion Generator. It has been named “Scitech Airon”. It helps to control bacteria, virus and fungal infections. The product disinfects areas that were exposed to infections thereby it ensures well being of doctors, nurses and staffs in the hospital. The product is highly useful in quarantine facilities. The Department of Science and Technology has released Rs 1 crore to manufacture the product in a larger scale. Around 1,000 of them are to be produced soon.

The technology was developed under “NIDHI PRAYAS” programme of Department of Science and Technology.

Working

The Scitech Airon machine creates negatively charged ions. These ions form clusters around viruses, bacteria and other airborne molds. They then render them inactive through chemical reactions by creating Hydroxyl radicals (OH) groups. Apart from pathogens, the machine also decomposes harmful pollutants such as Carbon Monoxide, Nitrogen dioxide, etc.

NIDHI PRAYAS

There is lack of support in the early stages of prototyping in the country/ This causes many innovators to lose interest in the early stages. PRAYAS is Promoting and Accelerating Young and Aspiring technology entrepreneurs. It is one of the 9 programmes launched to turn the ideas of young innovators into proof of concepts.

UNEP’s Colombo Declaration to tackle global nitrogen challenges

On October 24, 2019, the member states of United Nations endorsed a proposed road map for action on nitrogen challenges called Colombo Declaration on Sustainable Nitrogen Management. It was organized by Sri Lanka with the support of UN and its member nations. A two-day event was conducted to frame the declaration

Highlights

  • The aim of the Declaration is to halve nitrogen waste by 2030
  • Environment ministers and officials from more than 30 countries attended the event
  • The event endorsed UN plans for a campaign called “Nitrogen for Life”. The campaign aims at sustainable management of Nitrogen. It is based on the Sustainable Management Resolution that was adopted during the fourth session of the UN Environment Assembly that was held in Nairobi, Kenya in March 2019
  • The Declaration was developed with technical support from International Nitrogen Management System (INMS). INMS is a joint activity of UNEP and Internationals Nitrogen Initiative

Significance

There is need to reduce reactive nitrogen. This will help to reduce Eutrophic zones that are affecting fishing and tourism.

Reactive Nitrogen is the scientific term used for nitrogen compounds like nitrogen oxides, nitrous oxide, ammonia, etc. Most of them are result of intensive farming and misuse of fertilizers. These compounds enter Nitrogen Cycle. Excess reactive nitrogen affects environment very badly. They make the underground water unfit for drinking. They leach out the soil and pollute aquatic ecosystems. As they reach the aquatic eco systems they promote growth of algae extensively leading to eutrophication.